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Vidyaapati (Poet)
1352? - 1448? AD

Vidyaapati is a very famous Maithilee poet. He is much known for his love lyrics dedicated to Shiv. His language is very similar to those days of Maithilee (Bangaalee), Bihaar-Nepaal area. His prayers to Shiv are still sung in Mithilaa region.

Shiv As a Servant of Vidyaapati
Folklore says that he was such a great devotee of Shiv that he got very pleased with him, and once he decided to come in his house to live as his servant. His name, as a servant was Ugna. At many places Shiv is still worshipped as Ugna. Ugna told Vidyaapati that he was an orphan boy and wanted to work in his house. With a little hesitation Vidyaapati gave him the job to look after his cattle. Ugna became a very charming and loving servant of the poet.

One day Vidyaapati received an invitation for a royal function from the King of Mithilaa - Shivsinh. He took Ugna also with him. On the way Vidyaapati felt thirsty, but he could not se any water there as all around it was barren land. Finally helpless Vidyaapati asked Ugna to bring some water for him and requested to travel some more distance for it if need be. Vidyaapati himself could not walk any more and got unconscious. He fell on the ground. As Ugna was Shiv himself, he took out a jug of water from his Jataa (matted locks) and revived him to the consciousness and gave some water to drink. Vidyaapati felt the water taste like Gangaa water. He immediately asked Ugna that where he brought it from. Ugna did not want to disclose his identity but could not do so, so he tried to avoid the question. As he wanted to avoiud the question, Vidyaapati got more curious. Finally he had to appear as Shiv in his original form. Vidyaapati touched his feet, took the dust in his hands. Ugna now did not want Vidyaapati to disclose his identity even to his wife Susheelaa. Vidyaapati assured him to keep his secret. The he then put a condition on Vidyaapati that if he disclosed his identity on others, he would go away.

Thus Ugna remained with Vidyaapati for many years and helped him in many ways miraculously in adverse conditions. Once Shivsinh was arrested by Alaauddeen Khilajee, Vidyaapati accompanied by Ugna came to Delhi to release him. When Alaaudden came to kknow that Vidyaapati was a poet, he organized a debate between him and his own court poet. Vidyaapati with the blessings of Shiv defeated Khilajee's court poet.

Shiv Goes Away
Once Vidyaapati's wife assigned some work to Ugna. Unfortunately he failed to comply with her instruction, so she became very angry at him and started beating him, Vidyaapati could not tolerate this and he told her that she should not beat Shiv himself. According to the condition Shiv disappeared immediately. Vidyaapati realized his mistake and wandered around temple to temple in search of Ugna. Finally he found Ugna in Nandan Van. Shiv told him that he would not go back to his house but will surely help him whenever he required his help. Where Ugna disappeared, that place is known as Ugna Sthaan. A small Ling has been established there by his devotee and a small temple has also been consecrated there.

His Works
he has effect of Bangaalee and Udiyaa literature on his writings. He has written lyrics describing the love between Krishn and Raadhaa, very popular in Eastern India, like Geet Govind of Jayadev. A few works are there written by him -
Bhoo parikramaa
Daan Vaakyaavalee
Varsh Kritya
Durgaa Bhakti Taranginee. etc...


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Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Updated on 04/13/13